There is an abundance of life-changing opportunities within mixed martial arts these days.
It is no secret that the sport has been very fruitful for many athletes across the globe and it continues to bless those who put in the work and make an impression on the fans. Money and fame is indeed a big lure in all sports, but for many martial artists, legacy and honor still remain the main driving force in their careers.
It is “legacy” that Brazil’s Leonardo Mafra and Cleiton Silva will be fighting for when two of the best Brazilian BRAVE CF fighters face-off in a Super Lightweight bout at BRAVE CF 60 this weekend.
For the 36-year-old Silva (15-3-0, 1 NC), it is the opportunity to put his recent forgettable BRAVE CF Lightweight division run behind him. After winning the BRAVE CF 155 lb belt in 2019, the Predator was riddled with fight cancellations and disappointment. In late 2020 he lost his title to France’s Amin Ayoub before being offered another shot at the BRAVE CF Interim Lightweight belt two years later. However, Silva failed to make any advances back to the 155 lb throne after being dominated by Kyrgyzstan’s Abdisalam Kubanychbek, before the fight was declared a No Contest due to illegal strikes by Kubanychbek.
This weekend, the man fighting out of Belo Horizonte starts on a clean slate in a new division and it could be a “Second Coming” for the Brazilian who has some big scalps to his name with wins over current undisputed Lightweight champion, Egypt’s Ahmed Amir, Argentina’s Marcelo Bustos and Brazil’s Luan Santiago. A huge statement-win for Silva would not only make be the perfect debut at Super Lightweight, but it could also pave the way to another crack at a new title.
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Should Silva successfully make his way to the Super Lightweight title, he will then have etched his name in the BRAVE CF history books as only the second BRAVE CF athlete to become a two-division champion after former Middleweight and Light Heavyweight champion, Mohammad Fakhreddine.
For Mafra (15-6), the focus will be to get back into title conversations and prove himself worthy to BRAVE CF NATION. After losing in his debut at BRAVE CF 12, the 33-year-old who trains out of Kings MMA in California then secured his first and only win in the BRAVE CF promotion which came against the Netherlands’ Djamil Chan via unanimous decision.
He was then offered an opportunity to fight the Super Lightweight champion, Russian-born Eldar Eldarov. However, Mafra suffered a first round Doctor’s Stoppage, and it is no hidden secret that this result still sits fresh in the Brazilian’s memory. The technical brawler – who trains under the legendary striking coach, Rafael Cordeiro – has the perfect shot to make a huge statement and prove that he is 165 lb champion material should he beat the highly-talented Silva.
For both athletes, BRAVE CF 60 will not only be a chance to make another life-changing title run, but also the opportunity to further their legacies in one of the most distinguished mixed martial arts brands on the planet. BRAVE CF 60 takes place at the promotion’s headquarters in the Kingdom of Bahrain this Saturday, July 30th. For more details, visit www.bravecf.com
Roberto Villa is the CEO, Founder, Executive Writer, Senior Editor of FightBook MMA. Has a passion for Combat Sports and also a podcast host for Sitting Ringside. He’s also a former MMA fighter and Kickboxer.
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